Late December is all about game of the year this and best AAA game that, but what about all of the games that tend to fly under the radar? But what about the small indie games that small teams pour years of their hard work and endless passion into? This article is here to highlight those hidden gems on Nintendo Switch that released in the last 12 months.

Disclaimer: All ratings are noted in the ESRB rating.

Absolute Drift: Zen Edition

Developed By Funselektor Labs
Published By Funselektor
Genre
Racing / Simulation / Arcade
Rating
E
Players
1
This self proclaimed zen game is something really special and presents a welcome challenge. Get ready for precise driving and lots of crashing/practice in this arcade style driving game focused entirely on the automotive art of drifting. It breaks the mold of most driving games and what you wind up with is a game that's fun and challenging but never feels unfair or overly technical. The simplicity is where it really shines: the controls, graphics and concept are all bare bones and better off for it.

Click here to read our review of Absolute Drift

Aeolis Tournament

Developed By Beyond Fun Studio
Published By Beyond Fun Studio
Genre
Sports / Action / Arcade / Party
Rating
E
Players
1 - 8
Charge up your air cannon and get ready to blast your opponents away in up to eight player multiplayer mayhem. In this action party game, Aeolis Tournament has you competing in a variety of different modes with nothing but your air cannon and some determination. Its simple one button mechanic makes it accessible for players of all skill levels whilst not relying on luck and its mode variety keeps the gameplay fresh.

Click here to read our review of Aeolis Tournament

Alwa's Legacy

Developed By Elden Pixels
Published By Elden Pixels
Genre
Action / Adventure / Platformer
Rating
E
Players
1
Alwa’s Legacy is the sequel to Alwa’s Awakening, both developed by the awesome peeps at Elden Pixels. the story follows the protagonist Zoe as she meanders her way through the world of Alwa. It’s an action adventure/Metroidvania faithful to the games in the genre from the 80’s and 90’s and is sure to tap into the conscience of gaming nostalgia fans.

Click here to read our review of Alwa's Legacy

Arcade Spirits

Developed By Fiction Factory Games
Published By PQube
Genre
Visual Novel / Adventure
Rating
T
Players
1
In a world full of neon lights and the love of video games all around you, Arcade Spirits has you starting a brand new job at Funplex, the local arcade with a colourful cast of staff. Delve on a path to better yourself and perhaps find that special someone along the way. If you’ve ever wanted to work in an arcade or you just want to play a game that sparks joy, then this is the game for you.

Click here to read our review of Arcade Spirits

Boomerang Fu

Developed By Cranky Watermelon
Published By Cranky Watermelon
Genre
Action / Fighting / Arcade / Party
Rating
E10+
Players
1 - 6
Quaint with a childish charm and a competitive spin that makes for one of the Switch’s best party games, Boomerang Fu is an instant classic with its quirky physics, stunning visuals, upbeat music, and wealth of replay value. It’s cute, slick, and incredibly unique. There’s nothing quite like it on the market right now and yet the niche it fulfills feels oddly necessary.

Click here to read our review of Boomerang Fu

Brief Battles

Developed By Juicy Cupcake
Published By Juicy Cupcake
Genre
Action / Fighting / Arcade / Party
Rating
E10+
Players
1 - 4
In all its cheeky goodness, Brief Battles has you and up to three friends obtaining special underpants abilities in order to take each other out in an arena-style brawler. Juicy Cupcake’s debut title Brief Battles is a satirical gold mine that brings a lot of wit and charm to the party arena-based fighting genre.

Click here to read our review of Brief Battles

Carto

Developed By Sunhead Games
Published By Humble Games
Genre
Puzzle / Adventure
Rating
E
Players
1
After Carto is flung from her granny’s aircraft during a vicious storm, she finds herself with naught but her wit and a unique ability that allows her to alter the world like pieces in a multi-fitting jigsaw puzzle. Along the way, Carto will travel from one mysterious land to the next, helping villagers solve their problems and doing what she can to get back to her granny. Carto is a unique masterpiece that is the epitome of charm.

Click here to read our review of Carto

Embracelet

Developed By Machineboy
Published By Machineboy
Genre
Puzzle / Adventure
Rating
T
Players
1
Before the death of Jesper’s grandfather, he shares secrets of his past, passes down a mysterious bracelet and reveals that a young 17 year old Jesper will find answers on the northern Norwegian island known as Slepp. Embracelet is a narrative driven adventure game about loss and magic. It adopts many traits of the point and click genre whilst throwing in a twist to be able to shift large objects with the power of the magic bracelet.

Click here to read our review of Embracelet

Fledgling Heroes

Developed By Subtle Boom
Published By Subtle Boom
Genre
Arcade / Adventure / Platformer
Rating
E
Players
1 - 2
Dodge, duck, dip, dive and dodge through over 90 flapping levels as you control six different birds on a mystical adventure. Fledgling Heroes is Subtle Boom’s debut title and it proves that the team certainly have a lot of talent and a bright future ahead of them.

Click here to read our review Fledgling Heroes

Guard Duty

Developed By Sick Chicken Studios
Published By Ratalaika Games
Genre
Adventure
Rating
T
Players
1
Guard Duty is a tale as old as time itself; the beautiful princess has been kidnapped and it’s up to Tondbert, the lowly guard, to rise above adversity, find the evil that plagues the land, undo the wrong decision that altered the course of humanity and sets to destroys civilisation as we know it almost one thousand years in the future and, wait… What were we doing again? Oh right, the princess! Inspired by classics of the genre, Guard Duty is a point and click adventure that takes you on a journey, spanning a millennium whilst not forgetting to have a laugh along the way.

Click here to read our review of Guard Duty

Heroes of Hammerwatch: Ultimate Edition

Developed By Crackshell
Published By Blitworks
Genre
Roguelite / Action / Adventure
Rating
T
Players
1 - 4
Heroes of Hammerwatch is a procedurally-generated dungeon crawler, having you battle hordes of enemies as you work your way to the very top of the Forsaken Spire. Go in, grab all the loot you can find and make sure to bring it back up to the surface before you die because in the mines, your gold will be lost forever.

Click here to read our Quick Review of Heroes of Hammerwatch: Ultimate Edition

HyperParasite

Developed By Troglobyte Games / Hound Picked Games
Published By Qubic Games
Genre
Roguelike / Action / Adventure
Rating
M
Players
1 - 2
An evil parasite is slithering around a dystopian 80s, controlling civilians’ host bodies and wreaking havoc. As a roguelite twin-stick shooter, you play as said parasite, with various body types to take over and each with their own unique stats and abilities. So let’s conquer the world, one body at a time. It’s a roguelite done right in every sense of the word and is one that deserves every recognition it gets and then some.

Click here to read our review of HyperParasite

Infliction: Extended Cut

Developed By Caustic Reality
Published By Blowfish Studios
Genre
Horror / Puzzle / Adventure
Rating
M
Players
1
With a rocky introduction reminiscent of YouTube’s golden days of let’s players delving into cheap horror video-games with exaggerated ahs and oohs, Infliction sets the stage for a rocky but charming experience. However, it goes above and beyond that first impression. It benefits from a captivating story, a lack of reliance on jump-scares, and its responsive technical prowess.

Click here to read our review of Infliction: Extended Cut

ITTA

Developed By Glass Revolver
Published By Armor Games Studios
Genre
Action / Adventure
Rating
T
Players
1
ITTA​ is really weird, complete with ghost cats, chaotic gameplay and a chilling story. This game s​eems to draw clear inspiration from a varied group of games from the past 20 years. It​ is the distilled essence of what makes a good indie game with clear influence from both the indie community and more mainstream sources.

Click here to read our review of ITTA

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KUNAI

Developed By TurtleBlaze
Published By The Arcade Crew
Genre
Action / Adventure / Platformer
Rating
E10+
Players
1
KUNAI is set in a post-apocalypic alternate future where robots are the sole lifeform due to a catastrophic event caused by the evil artificial intelligence known as Lemonkus. You play as Tabby, a sentient tablet with the spirit of an ancient warrior, as you delve into the depths of Earth’s ruins to uncover ancient weapons and face Lemonkus face-to-face. With its minimalistic art style and slick control movements, Kunai will have you feeling like a real robot ninja.

Click here to read our review of KUNAI

Legends of Amberland: The Forgotten Crown

Developed By Silver Lemur Games
Published By Pineapple Works
Genre
RPG / Adventure
Rating
E
Players
1
Legends of Amberland: The Forgotten Crown takes direct inspiration from classic CRPGs from the early 90s, where movement was grid based and characters were shown only in small portraits. It embraces the history of the genre they are paying homage to while adding some quality of life mechanics, such as an onscreen map that helps to make the experience easier.

Click here to read our Quick Review of Legends of Amberland: The Forgotten Crown

Locomotion

Developed By Polyfox
Published By Polyfox
Genre
Puzzle / Strategy / Adventure
Rating
E
Players
1
All aboard a puzzle adventure along the railroad tracks, collecting lost gold and proceeding from one crazy world to the next. Locomotion‘s family-friendly approach is an invitation to players of all ages. With a total of 52 bite-sized levels to enjoy across four unique worlds, Locomotion is perhaps a perfect puzzle game to experience on Switch.

Click here to read our review of Locomotion

Nine Witches: Family Disruption

Developed By Indiesruption
Published By Blowfish Studios
Genre
Adventure / Puzzle / Action
Rating
T
Players
1
The month is October 1944 at the height of the second World War. In a Nazi occupied Norwegian town of Sundäe, the Okkulte-55 is on a mission to put an end to the war by unleashing an ancient curse. Alexei Krakovitz, a quadriplegic professor with the ability to communicate with the dead, and Akiro Kagasawa, Alexei’s faithful assistant from Japan, are on a mission to put a stop to the Nazi’s evil plans by going undercover in classic adventure style. With dry dark humour that’ll sure to have you smiling from ear-to-ear with slight pangs of guilt as shiny red cherries on top, there's a reason Nine Witches: Family Disruption won the award of Best Hidden Gem, as well as being nominated for Best Nindie, in our 2020 Game of the Year Awards.

Click here to read our review of Nine Witches: Family Disruption

Oceanhorn 2: Knights of the Lost Realm

Developed By Cornfox & Bros
Published By Cornfox & Bros
Genre
Action / Adventure / RPG
Rating
E10+
Players
1
Speaking of our 2020 Game of the Year Awards, Oceanhorn 2: Knights of the Lost Realm was one of our five nominations for Best Hidden Gem. The game is an homage to the Legend of Zelda series and plays very similarly i.e. action RPGs with a heavy emphasis on exploration and puzzle solving. It’s well-made and fun, a must-have for any Zelda fan.

Click here to read our review of Oceanhorn 2: Knights of the Lost Realm

Projection: First Light

Developed By Shadowplay Studios
Published By Blowfish Studios
Genre
Puzzle / Adventure / Platformer
Rating
E10+
Players
1
Enter the world of shadow puppeteering as a young girl named Greta who can manipulate light to travel to far off lands. In Projection: First Light, experience a variety of cultures and embrace their artistic approaches to the practise as the mischievous Greta chases a butterfly into a Shadow Theatre where her world takes many new forms before her very eyes. We at Switchaboo had been looking forward to Projection: First Light ever since we interviewed Michael from Shadowplay Studios back at PAX AUS 2018 and it was well worth the wait.

Click here to read our review of Projection: First Light

Red Wings: Aces of the Sky

Developed By ALL IN! GAMES
Published By ALL IN! GAMES
Genre
Action / Simulation
Rating
E10+
Players
1 - 2
Games set in historical times tend to get bogged down in their setting that’ll alienate some players. Luckily, Red Wings: Aces of the Sky is a fast paced WWI-era dogfighting game that doesn’t take itself too seriously. Red Wings is something special and this is due in great part to the restraint of the studio.

Click here to read our review of Red Wings: Aces of the Sky

Sky Racket

Developed By Double Dash Studios
Published By Double Dash Studios
Genre
Action / Arcade
Rating
E10+
Players
1 - 2
This slept-on indie gem is tucked away in an oasis of its own making, standing out from the desert of retro Indies and solidifying itself as an instant classic. Sky Racket has a name as catchy as MegaMan, a concept as engaging as Shovel Knight and so much polish that it’s not even remotely surprising that this game has been in development for half a decade.

Click here to read our review of Sky Racket

Spacejacked

Developed By Rotten Mage
Published By Ratalaika Games
Genre
Action / Adventure / Platformer
Rating
E10+
Players
1
Spacejacked is a 2D tower defence game that also borrows elements from 2D run ‘n gun platformers. Build and upgrade turrets, defend the Core against them and protect the spaceship to make it out alive. You’re the only one who can save the ship and rescue the kidnapped crew, so let’s show these aliens what we’re made of!

Click here to read our review of Spacejacked

Squidlit

Developed By Squidlit Ink
Published By Squidlit Ink
Genre
Action / Adventure / Platformer
Rating
E
Players
1
Relive the glory days of gaming with Squidlit, a charming platforming adventure that is faithful to the Game Boy hardware. In Squidlit, evil is afoot, and your little squid friend must jump, ink enemies and eat muffins to save the land. Stop the villainous Skwit Skwot in all of Squidlit’s puke-green goodness.

Click here to read our review of Squidlit

TAURONOS

Developed By 16 Bit Nights
Published By Restless Corp
Genre
Adventure / Puzzle / Simulation / Arcade
Rating
E10+
Players
1
Locked in a labyrinth where the goal is to escape, you are trapped with a vicious Minotaur who lives within and is constantly hunting you down with unending vigor. TAURONOS is a well designed adventure influenced by Greek mythology that will have you wanting to escape the puzzles that trap you. Delve deeper into your own memories and pray to the gods that you escape and kill the beast.

Click here to read our review of TAURONOS

WARBORN

Developed By Raredrop Games
Published By PQube
Genre
Strategy / RPG
Rating
E10+
Players
1 - 2
WARBORN is a simpler version of Fire Emblem set in space, and that’s not a bad thing. It takes the fun head-scratching combat that makes the genre great and takes away the extraneous fluff like an arbitrary overworld and overly complicated story. Things like this may add to the complexity of a game, but they don’t always add to the enjoyment. WARBORN strips that away and keeps the bones intact.

Click here to read our review of WARBORN

WINGSPAN

Developed By Monster Couch
Published By Monster Couch
Genre
Card Game / Board Game / Strategy / Party
Rating
E
Players
1 - 5

Snuggle up with your switch and a nice cup of hot cocoa and a blanket overtop this holiday season with WINGSPAN - you won't regret it one bit. For all intents and purposes, this bird-themed board game makes the leap from coffee table to small screen in spectacular fashion - it's infectiously cute in all the right places, and is intuitive to a T. If there's a card game to get on the Switch, or a board game for that matter, then WINGSPAN is the one to nab.

Click here to read our review of WINGSPAN

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